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Application Guidelines

International Student Application Guidelines

The State University of New York (SUNY) offers undergraduate (associate and bachelor's degrees) and graduate (masters, doctoral and professional degrees) programs at 64 individual campuses. We have created these guidelines to assist you in understanding the procedure for undergraduate admission. For graduate admission, please consult the Graduate Academic Program Search.

An international applicant is a prospective student who is neither a U.S. citizen nor permanent resident of the United States and will require a non-immigrant visa for study in the United States.

International Undergraduate Student Application Procedures

  1. Choose a Major and Campus; select a program of study or indicate undeclared (if you are unsure about a program of study).
  2. Submit your application for admission; apply online. Completion of the application is recommended by December 1 for fall admission and September 1 for spring semester admission. Later application deadlines are available for some campuses so be sure to check with each campus to which you intend to apply.
  3. Pay the non-refundable application fee of $50 per campus by credit card or check. Checks must be payable to SUNY Application Services Center (SUNY ASC) in U.S. dollars drawn on a U.S. bank. Do not send cash.
  4. Submit official secondary school records with an official seal, stamp or signature of a school or government official in the original language showing all courses taken, grades earned, examinations passed and diplomas obtained. If not written in English, please provide an exactly worded and certified translation. Send all documents directly to the campus(es) to which you apply.

    International First-Year (Freshman) Applicants:
    • You must have completed the highest level of secondary education in your country of residence.
    • You must submit official secondary school records.
    • You must meet the language requirements.
    Transfer Applicants:
    • You must submit the required materials listed as well as transcripts from all colleges or universities/each post-secondary institution of higher education attended.
    • Students currently enrolled in a college or university should send a partial transcript upon application and then a final transcript once the marks/grades have been recorded and coursework completed.
    • Transfer applicants will be evaluated for admission based on the number of credits completed and the grades received in their coursework. Transcripts should show grades/marks and credits earned for all college-level work. The number of completed credits and grades required will vary among SUNY colleges, and individual colleges may also require secondary education records.

    If your transcripts are not written in English, certified translations must be attached to the original transcript with a key to the marking system or grading scale included (if it is not indicated on the transcript). For translation and evaluation of transcripts, contact an evaluation service provider. If you need assistance selecting an evaluation service provider, please contact the admissions office at your campus of interest.

  5. English is the language of instruction at SUNY. Your success will depend on your ability to express yourself well in daily class work, written papers, and on examinations.

    International First-Year (Freshman) Applicants:
    • You must demonstrate English proficiency via the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), TOEFL iBT (Internet-based TOEFL), or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) examination, or SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) or ACT (American College Test), or equivalent as determined by individual campuses.
      • Exams must be taken by any prospective student whose native language is not English.
      • Exams should be taken as early as possible and students should have results sent directly to the admissions office at each SUNY campus to which a student would like to apply.
      • If more than one exam is reported to a campus, campuses will consider highest exam score.
      • The minimum required proficiency scores vary among SUNY colleges.
    Transfer Applicants:
    • Within the U.S.- You may not be required to submit additional proof of English Language Proficiency (e.g. TOEFL, IELTS) if you have attended an accredited university or college within the United States, or have attended an English-speaking university and have taken college-level English writing and composition classes.
    • Outside of U.S. – You will be required to submit proof of English Language Proficiency via the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), TOEFL iBT (Internet-based TOEFL), or IELTS (International English Language Testing System) examination, or SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) or ACT (American College Test), or equivalent as determined by individual campuses.
  6. Demonstrate financial means/support to cover your educational and living expenses while attending a U.S. university or college according to immigration regulations. Funding requirements differ from year to year and campus to campus. Applicants should visit each individual campus website for estimated expenses and funding requirements as well as timeline for submitting these materials. The SUNY International Student Financial Statement & Instructions form will provide additional information on financial requirements. Students who plan to bring dependents (spouse and/or children) to the U.S. during their studies are required to show additional funds for those individuals. The individual campuses will assist you with these requirements upon acceptance. International students are not eligible for New York State or federal financial aid.
  7. Submit any supplemental application requirements such as personal essay, copy of biographical page of passport, or additional forms. These requirements vary from campus to campus. Please visit each campus website to which you are applying to identify any additional application requirements.
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